Monday, September 27, 2010

Thanks to Andrew for helping me get over writers block.

Kristine Dyer
September 27th, 2010
Non-Fiction Piece

We live a symphony, full of meter, rhyme, and melody. We rise to the blare of an alarm, stretch sleepily, get dressed, begin our day, come home, make dinner, eat, watch TV, go to bed. Rhythm.
Shibuya, Japan, home to the busiest crosswalk in world, has an innumerable number of people that walk across the street. The heart beat of Tokyo, this crosswalk has a melody full of flashing lights, the sound of beating hooves waiting, impatiently, pawing at the ground. Thousands heading to work, millions in awe of the busyness and still others, wandering lost. The lights giving systematic permission to those waiting to cross this famous place to continue the rhythm of their lives. As a little white man with a bowler hat appears on the sign, the metronome begins to signal the moments each of the thousands of people crossing have to become a part of a spiderweb of intersecting lives. Each moment we have touches the moments of others, and in Shibuya, millions of lives touch, for a beat. Never truly becoming entwined, but touching. And I found myself with my best friend, watching, together. Observing the chaotic bustle of caged humans rushing the moment they were given permission to, and lingering past their time, toying with danger.
Sierra Forde was my foil. She was angry, caustic, ever spouting words referring to fecal matter. Sulking in the shadows she emitted frustration and bitterness. I was bubbly, na├»ve, attention-seeking, holier-than-thou and full of bright, optimistic colors. Ninth grade was good to no one. Ridgetop Junior High was a training ground for those who would become high school stereotypes. It brought forth to the world mean girls, jocks, goths and nerds. Not a single student was safe from having their world rocked and torn apart. I went as an “exotic” new student from Hawai'i and was soon adopted by Bridget Goodwin. The school soon knew me as her pet and her former best friend hated me. But I was drawn to Sierra. Her inexplicable hate intrigued me and that caused me to pursue her even more heartily. I burst into her life shocking her as I matched her caustic humor.  And she burst into mine, shaking the very foundation of myself. I was never quite sure if we were becoming friends, or if her sarcasm was serious. I was caught in a riptide of her desire for love, and her fear of rejection. I was lonely, despite (or because of) Bridget's affections. I had no friends at church and invited Sierra in an attempt to curb my loneliness.
The next year was a whirlwind of anger, happiness and depression. I never knew if she wanted me as a friend, and I wanted so desperately for her to accept Christ, because in her acceptance, maybe I would be able to find my redemption. We laughed about high school, fought about moral and ethical issues. I cried over her confusing love, and she cried because of her need for it. It was a blur of Seattle rain, which she loved and the clear sunshine that I craved. There were cherry blossoms, begging to be danced beneath; brown, red and orange leaves to be crushed beneath our feet, and light snow for which we prayed earnestly. A rush of meter at 180 beats per minute never leaving time for dramatic pause.
I began to see Sierra's shell slowly melt and her desire for an unconditional, consistent love lead her to Jesus Christ on January 24th, 2008. From that moment we were fast friends. We went to different schools Sophomore year, but church tied us together. We rode together every Thursday for the next two years. From my mother's cautious, gentle driving, to my father's abrupt, proactive driving, we had hundreds of conversations ranging from God's will in our lives, to goose poop. Those 15 minute car rides were the highlight of my week. I was able to spend time, with not only my parents, but with my best friend. It was during one of these car rides I told Sierra my family was being transferred to Japan the summer before my senior year.
In the months before I moved, Sierra began to shut down. She felt abandoned and adopted  preventative measures to stop me from rejecting and forgetting about her. I was so hurt, when I needed her the most she abandoned me. How many times had I been there to push past the wall of passive aggression she used to hide her pain? How many times had I told her I would be there for her? And when I was falling into the pit of depression she took “Fine” for an answer. She hadn't even taken the time to find out what day I was leaving. I was heart broken. All of the time I invested, all of the times I confided in her, all of the things we shared suddenly felt pointless. My mother had promised she would fly Sierra out to Japan for my graduation present. Sierra was wary of this, thousands of broken promises floated in front of her eyes. She didn't allow herself to accept this and told me it wouldn't work out.  
Before I moved, Sierra and I talked. I finally screamed about my frustrations. I began to share the struggles I had been denying by supporting her. It felt like selfishness. It felt like denying the very essence of my being, I lived to help others, people weren't allowed to know about my struggles. I screamed about being unloved by her, and that she didn't love me well enough.
I saw her for two weeks on my last youth group trip with Silverdale Baptist. During that week, we cried. Sometimes it began with her. Sometimes it was me. Sometimes it was others crying for us. But we laughed, constantly. Often we laughed and then cried. Or cried and then laughed. I brought a full-sized Aero Bed air mattress to the trip with me. It was blue and double layered and had a felt top that enhanced the sweat from you body and made it impossible to roll over. I shared it with Sierra and our friend Lauren. Sierra slept in different positions every night, but mostly in the middle. I slept on the  outside. But it felt safe. I knew how she hogged blankets, and that her feet were ticklish and if I touched them, she would kick me onto the floor. It was security.
July 31st, 2009, my dog and I flew to Yokota, Japan and my path with Sierra diverged. I made the three hour car ride to my new home, on the wrong side of the vehicle. That year I made friends with my English teacher, my brothers, my mother and father and several guys from school. It was a maze of a year. I had to find my way around this strange country on a train and find my way around myself. It was ugly and beautiful at the same time. I hated the industry and how busy it was. But I loved the ocean and the flowers that highlighted the roads. I hated not speaking the language, but I loved finding ways to communicate with people. I hated feeling alone, but loved supporting people who felt the same way. I hated school, but loved what I learned from these people who lived a life in complete antithesis to mine. I survived, as I always had and I graduated with some new friends, who may yet become old friends.
My ever faithful mother bought Sierra plane tickets to Japan after graduation. And Sierra came, filled with hope. I was brimming over with so much happiness that my mouth overflowed with words and for several hours I couldn't stop talking. We went to my room and laughed. She laughed her hearty, majestic laugh and I snorted. Loudly. It was as if all the frustration I had endured that year was ripped apart by our laughter. We rolled around in my blankets and tackled each other with pillows. We ignored the struggles we had for just a moment, setting them to the side so for a brief second we could laugh as if the whole world was an acceptable place in which to live. We always had time to talk about struggles.
We spent the two weeks laughing more, expelling water from our eyes, basking in the sun by the beach, eating ramen and rice and taking trains all over the area. Three days before she left, we caught a 2:47pm train to Yokohama, transferred to Tokyo and ventured on towards Shibuya. Above this crosswalk is the busiest Starbucks in the world. We took an escalator up to the counters with stools overlooking the hustle and bustle of the cross walk. The lights flash and advertisements for chocolate sticks play on loop on a television screen. To the right is a restaurant with lights that meld into pink, blue, yellow and green. Below the sidewalk slowly fills up, as a clog in the kitchen sink. And slowly, the street lights turn yellow and flash red. Thousands of people run across, and as a flashing red hand appears, the stragglers run as fast as they can to avoid the cars rushing past. Diagonally, horizontally and vertically, thousands of people collide for but a moment. Each of their paths crossing, lives touching for a blink of time.
Here in this place, where millions of lives converge and intersect and fall apart, I sat with my best friend for three hours. Three hours with less than three hundred words spoken, but three thousand shared. The world below us looked so small. We could reach out our hands and pinch a running figure by the neck and pocket him, the world being none the wiser. We sat side by side, below us the world seeming so insignificant, yet massive and full of strength. We sat, both following a person as they crossed and melded into the crowd, choosing one person to follow and become a part of their lives for just a brief instant. We laughed as some walked as slowly as possible, while others ran back and forth, making the most of their moment. We watched some loose items of clothing and others get caught with traffic coming head on. As the clog drained, I picked a man standing by the entrance to a subway, waiting. Sierra pointed,
 “He hasn't moved for ten minutes.”
  We watched. Moderately tall, skinny, Asian, blue sweater, dark wash jeans, hair stylishly messy and blue Converse shoes. Was he waiting for a friend, a sibling perhaps? It was obvious that he was waiting for someone. But the look upon his face was too dismal for merely waiting. It could be nothing other than a girl.
He had been in love with her since the first time she walked into his office. The way she walked, gently padding her feet in an attempt to mute the click of her heels, her brash voice that always had some opinion to share, her short hair making a statement, all enraptured him. It had taken him 21 days and 3.7 hours to say a formal hello and introduce himself. Oh, her smile warmed him to the core. 53 days and 6.13 hours to strike up a full conversation about the new Prime Minister. By the 82nd day, and 4 conversations later, he resolved to ask her to dinner. She had off handedly mentioned that she loved restaurants. A week later, she had accepted.
He was beside himself. Two days before the date, he drove for three hours in a panic, to ask his sister to shop with him, he had nothing suitable to wear. She had laughed, but eventually relented. The day came, he had specially chosen an expensive restaurant overlooking the famous Shibuya crosswalk. He thought this would be a fabulous plan, so that they would not run out of topics to discuss.
But he sat, 27 minutes of agony. Why, oh why hadn't he gotten her number, he handed his to her, carefully handwritten on a card, and dashed away before she had a chance to share hers. He checked his phone for the 43rd time. Nothing.  
We saw him pick up his phone and open it, looking at it with incredible disappointment. A wave of panic contorted his face. She must be at home, laughing at his foolishness. How could he face himself? Again he checked his phone. A look of excitement, but as he answered, frustration. Probably a friend checking on him. He turned to grab his bag and began to walk. The light turned red. He looked down avoiding all eye contact. We watched, with our hearts breaking for this poor man. He began the walk of shame when a small, woman with dark wash jeans, short hair and green Converse shoes bounded up to him. He turned around with eyes wide.  She hugged him and they bounced away together across the street, their lives becoming part of a bigger picture.
Sierra and I thought for a moment, how we intersected, carefully planned by some higher Being. And if it be just for a moment, than we would be blessed with our awe-inspiring lives and the blessings God had ordained for us. Together we turned to leave, taking our final walk across this crosswalk. As we walked into the station a moderately tall Japanese man with a girlfriend wearing green Converse bumped into us and waved.
Rhythm.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Stupid

It's really stupid. Incredibly stupid. It starts off with a friendship, and the intention was to end it with one, but I can't talk to you anymore. I just can't. You have no idea how many times I opened a text, and started a message. It's just said "hi". But I can't bring myself to send it. Because I don't want you to think connotatively about it. I don't want you back, and I'm sure you don't want me back. But I miss having someone to talk to. Do you know that no one is coming to the birthday party I'm not having? I miss having you as a friend. But I don't know what to say any more. Isn't that dumb? People work so hard to build relationships, but then you come to the realization that romance ruins everything, 'cause chances are... it won't work out. So you loose a friend and someone who cares about you. And things will never be the same, because you're constantly thinking about what it felt like to hug that person, or hold hands with them. And you wonder if what they said was actually a lie, or if it was the truth.
If it was a lie, then you feel used. But it hurts worse if it was the truth, but now it doesn't mean anything.
That I don't mean anything. 


Which leads back to the assertion that it's really stupid. And it's frustrating, because when you talk there are so many unsaid questions hanging in the air. Most of them begin with why.
Why did you want to break up with me?
Why wasn't I good enough?
Why aren't you attracted to me?
Why am I not what you want?


And it might not have anything to do with me, but I think it all the time. I think about how it was bound to end, but why now? Why couldn't it have been something we couldn't reconcile? Why did it have to be that you weren't "into me"? What wasn't there to be into? 


and I think about physical appearance, and though it may have nothing to do with it, I still wonder. Was I too short, too fat? Why didn't you think I was beautiful? 


WHY WHY WHY? 


It's foolish really. It's dumb. 
But it's there. And its what I feel. 
And I'll hint around, and hope someday, we can resolve these questions so I can have my friend back. 
But realistically, we won't be friends again. Not in the same way,
leading to the conclusion.


That love ruins everything.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Amazing quote

Some people need to hear this.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." -Marianne Williamson

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Hurting?

People, distance, things that change,
Everyday is something strange.
Now we move, far apart.
Not just in miles, but in our hearts.
Does the swallow carry love,
Across the moors that
blah blah blah


It's been said a million times, in thousands of blogs and poems-- Love sucks.
Relationships are synonymous with heartache.
So what is it that people want?
It seems a fundamental, we all want love.
So what makes it so hard to love others?

If love is something that everyone wants, if acceptance is something that everyone longs for, and affirmation is something everyone desires, what makes it so hard to give it out? Is it so difficult to hand out the thing that we desire the most? When you open yourself up to someone, and hope that they accept you-- all your flaws, quirks, hopes and dreams-- you leave yourself open to a world of rejection. You allow your deepest desires to be judged and lay them bare to be trampled on. So why is it, that people keep seeking love? Why can't we find it in ourselves the love we want from others? Because, it's easier to love yourself. It's easier to affirm your own choices, its easier to accept what you are, but asking others to accept you and love you is getting affirmation from the world. If the world can love you, then you have everything. But then we're back at the beginning, why can't we give everything to others? Is it so difficult to let little things go? The problem is that we love ourselves so much that we can't love others. It's a catch-22. Unless we are loved, we find it hard to love others because we don't love ourselves. Over and over. It's human nature to shy away from differences. We can't unconditionally love people who are different. Different speech, hygiene, hopes, morals, aspirations, interactions with the world. Different. And with rejection, hundreds of unwanted questions attack.
Was I not good enough?
Did I do something wrong?
Am I too clingy?
Did he even like me in the first place?
Was it all a lie?
And those these questions may have no logical basis, they keep itching at your mind like a bug bite. Because the basis of your identity has been rejected.
And maybe there are good reasons accompanying these rejections, nevertheless, heartache attacks leaving these pesky questions behind.
SO what do we do?

Love.


Do the thing we despise the most at the moment. You hurt, so does everyone. No one is completely happy with themselves or with their relationships, so end the cycle.
Easier said than done.
But,
give someone some love.
People that see you loving want to love you back. If you see someone without a smile, give them yours.
Ask someone how they are,
How they really are.
And listen to the answer.
Tell someone they are beautiful.
Don't just say you love someone, tell them why.
If you can't love, how can you expect to get it back?
And someday, if you wait, someone is gonna find you
and sweep you off your feet, and want to love you. All of you, even the temper tantrums you throw when you loose at Monopoly.
and send you notes, just because they want you to think of them. Flowers because he wants you to smile.
Then its all worth it.

So I propose a challenge,
Love someone different from you.
Not your best friend…that's too easy.
Love someone you don't agree with,
Send them an email listing things you like about them.
And maybe they'll pass it on. And that's all it takes.
This world needs a little love, on this we all agree,
They why won't this pattern, start with you and me.

:)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Breath.

Every three years, like clockwork, my family was handed the orders dictating that we must relocate as my father could better serve his country in another location. And we moved while I watched enviously as my friends' fathers had their orders extended, giving them three more years of the life they had created. I have always hated that I've had to visit home, and that I could never have it. Home has been at the tip of my fingers for eighteen years, just out of my reach. After a while, I began to realize that family is the only home I'd ever have, wherever that may be. Going to college felt like I was loosing every little bit of home I had. I now had to define myself, not by my parents jobs or by the clothes they bought me or the church they decided to attend, but by myself. I've always had a fear of being alone, and just two days after my 18th birthday, I felt I would be. Each day leading up to my execution felt like something was being stripped from me. I felt my identity being taken from me. My life was being dramatically transformed, radically altered, until I barely recognized it. Who I was seemed a lie. All the self assured confidence that I possessed was swept away in a wave of doubt. I was no longer Kristine, I was a ball of clay, back at square one ready to be remade. Into what was the question. At the end of this, who would I be? Would I loose myself along the way? Where would I end up? There was a maze of roads in front of me, each within my grasp; I could choose my fate. What if I choose wrong, with so many options how would I know the right one? There were so many possibilities of the thing I feared more than any other, failure. So I prayed, often. I prayed and breathed. "Please let this be right." Breath. "Was this correct?" Breath. "What is your will?" Breath. And then held my breath while waiting for an answer.

Friday, April 9, 2010

What's A title

We are.
We are small.
We are that we are.
You and me.
Differently.
We are, faceless,
Souls longing to be.
We are lights,
In a never ending sea.
Passing by like
Fireflies,
But a moment,
For to see.
We are distance.
Floating in the wind,
Flurries in the snow,
Flying past the sun,
Going on and on.
We are,
Separate.
But together all the same,
Nothing but a name.
Looking for a change.
Trying NOT to change.
Looking for a home,
Looking for a place,
With someone we can face,
Someone we can show,
All the things we feel,
And the things we long to know.
To be all that we are.
and We are.
Us

Saturday, January 23, 2010

It's a step. And we move in a dance, a whirlwind. Emotions run high, then..nothing. Trust and betrayal. And hope, always hope. Guiding us, moving us forward. 

And we walk. Faster, further away from who we were. Closer to an obscure version of ourselves; who did we want to be? Each beat takes us further away from what we thought.
 
There's laughter. But the laughter brings tears. Peace. Taken from us. Moving ceaselessly we change. Ever molding into some being unbeknowest to us. 

Suffocation.  Struggling with every ounce to fight. Being sucked into the waves. Do you know me? Do you know you? We've nothing to prove, still we fight. 

Acceptance. Warmth floods my soul. Free from self conciousness. Me. You. Them. Us. Together. We laughed, ran, teased, shared, lost, fought, sighed. Gone. 

Rejection. Every flaw times ten. Too short, too fat. Too rude, too loud, too quiet, too wrong, too right, too bad, too good, too odd, too normal. Too me. 

An idea. Growing, pulsing, taking life. Maybe? No. Uncertainty. Do you? Do I?when? How? Could you? I could. Hope, resignation. Anxiety. Am I good enough for him? Please 

Longing. Lonely, waiting for light. Trusting it may come. Pushing.  Pulling. Ebb and flow. Closer, further. Must you go? 

Wounds open. Where are you? Why not me? What is she, everything I couldn't be. Disillusioned. Leaking emotions. Fix it. Come back, fill my emptiness. But still you stay. 

He. Everything. Constant, He fills me. Soveriegn. Never good enough, yet He loves me. You are. I, weak, lowly. His? Full. Complete, only He fills me. 
Broken so I could be whole. 

Harmony.